Posted on

Anatomy of a Good Advertisement

Anatomy of a Good Advertisement

Advertising is a major part of marketing.  As far as some people are concerned, it’s the only thing marketing really does.  While we know this isn’t exactly true, learning how to create a good advertisement will help you get the most out of your investments.

Most of the advertising you’ll do will be paid graphical ads which appear on other websites.  You may also do some sort of Google Pay-Per-Click, but the concepts are basically the same.  The goal is to grab people’s attention and get them to click your link.  This article will help you do exactly that.

Short and Sweet

 People are exposed to such an excessive amount of advertising these days that you don’t get much of their attention.  You may get a second, at most, before someone has decided to engage with or ignore your advertising.  This means the impact your ad makes needs to happen right away.

Simpler and shorter is better.  If it can be done in only a few words, that’s the best way to go.  Remember that your ad won’t be very big. It won’t be able to do much, because you want to keep your costs down.  Something short, direct, and engaging is what you’ll need.

Engage

 The biggest problem with a lot of advertising is that it tries to sell to customers.  While this might be the point of the ad itself, it would be far more successful if it could engage the customers somehow—just enough to click on the ad.  You want to make them think, to make them stop and consider your ad or click through to find more information.

The key to engaging your viewers is to understand them.  What are their hot-button topics?  What can you hit on to really get them going?  Consider being a little controversial.  Avoid the most obvious route and choose a message that will really force them to click.

Asking for their opinions can help.  Running a contest that requires player participation is great.  At the very least, use a message that might make them a little upset so they’ll be more inclined to click through and see what you’re talking about.

Tracking

 Tracking may not seem like a major part of a good advertisement, but that’s just because customers will never see it.  From the business side of things, however, tracking is one of the most important elements in any advertisement.  Tracking is important because you’ll never truly know how successful an ad is unless you have a way to track its effectiveness.

There are a number of great tracking programs you can use and many of them are free.  You’ll be able to see exactly how many times the ad was displayed, how many times it was clicked, and even things such as where the visitors went or how long they stayed.  This is invaluable information which lets you perfect your advertising in the future.

Creating great advertisements is hard when you’re doing everything yourself.  What you need is a team of experienced and dedicated professionals that can do all of the work for you. 

Posted on

How To Segment Your List To Improve Your ROI

How To Segment Your List To Improve Your ROI

Email marketing has the highest ROI of any online marketing method. That alone makes it worth doing. But, did you know that you can maximize your ROI simply by segmenting your list?

List segmentation is considered an advanced email marketing technique. However, it’s not very complicated to do, and you can even ask subscribers to self-segment and eliminate the guesswork. Let’s talk about some of the ways to segment your list.

Segmentation Based on Behavior

The most common way marketers segment their lists is by tracking their subscribers’ behavior and using their actions as a guideline. Let’s look at some examples.

Example 1

A clothing manufacturer that sells apparel for women, men, and children tracks customer purchases to determine what products they want to hear about. A woman who buys clothing for herself might receive only emails about women’s clothing. If she switches it up and buys kids’ clothes, she might start getting emails for those too.

Example 2

A software company segments people who buy a certain product into a separate list. The people on that list then receive a series of emails designed to sell them on a complementary or upgraded product. Once they buy it, they’re then directed to a new list selling accessories or a related product… and so on.

These examples both illustrate ways that a marketer might segment based on behavior. Some basic email automation software doesn’t allow for list segmentation. But, most premium products do—and marketers who segment their lists get higher open, click-through, and conversion rates.

In fact, according to Mail Chimp, segmented emails outperform non-segmented emails across the board. They get:

14.31% more opens

100.95% more clicks

9.37% fewer unsubscribe requests

These statistics clearly illustrate the benefits of list segmentation.

Self-Segmentation

The second option is to ask your subscribers to self-segment. You can do this at the point of subscription, or later. Here are some suggestions.

Self-segmentation at the time of subscription can be effective. However, you’ll need to balance it against the fact that including additional fields in your opt-in form may drive some subscribers away. If you choose this option, keep the fields to a minimum.

Another option is to ask subscribers to self-segment when you send them a confirmation email. That way, they’ve already opted in. Now, you’re just asking them to help you out by indicating which topics they’re interested in. It’s a good way to reassure new subscribers that you won’t be spamming them.

A third option, and this is ideal if you already have a list, is to send out a link asking your subscribers to self-segment. Add a note about wanting to ensure they receive only the emails they want to receive.

If you select this option, you can either link them to a segmentation page on your website and connect it to your email automation service. Or, you can embed the form in your email, so they can respond without having to visit your website.

Whichever option you choose, make sure that you honor subscribers’ requests. This is not the time to bend the rules. The only exception would be if you’re sending out an email that applies to all subscribers. An example might be a store-wide sale or promotion.

Conclusion

Once your list is segmented, you’re likely to see an uptick in your key email metrics, including your unique open rate, your click-through rate, and—most importantly—your conversion rate. If you don’t, it may be an indication that additional segmentation is needed, or that your emails aren’t compelling.

Posted on

Choosing Topics That Draw Visitors to Your Website

Choosing Topics That Draw Visitors to Your Website

By now, most online marketers know the basics of maintaining a relevant website. Regular updating, easy readability, intriguing headlines, and accessible writing are all widely understood to be essential to keeping people interested in your website.

However, none of these things address the most essential aspect of generating and maintaining traffic that can ultimately be turned into sales. That all-important detail is…finding topics your audience will be interested in to begin with. 

Topics Are What Matter

No matter how often you update your site, how well-written your material is, how cleverly you promote your content with catchy headlines and good writing, it will all come to nothing if the subject matter is boring.

The trick is to come up with topics that your visitors will want to read and which also make them feel that your site is worth visiting again when they’re done.

Today’s internet audience is amazingly fickle, so if you can’t keep a steady stream of relevant, compelling topics coming out, then you will find your traffic tumbling as your audience deserts you. 

Uniqueness is Gold

What actually constitutes compelling website topics? That, of course, will vary widely based upon what the subject matter of your website is. However, there is one characteristic that readers value which cuts across all possible topics. That golden characteristic is uniqueness.

No matter how well-done your article is on the topics you cover, it will fall flat if people have already seen it before. No one wants yesterday’s news or content that they can get anywhere.

What attracts and holds traffic are articles that you have but that no one else does. Once you establish a reputation as a website with a fresh perspective with info that only you offer, you will find traffic flocking to your site from all over on a daily basis. 

How to Know What is Unique

So, how do you know what is unique? There is really only one way to find out, and that is to see what everybody else in your market is doing for readers like yours.

Monitoring the sites of your competitors and sites dealing with areas related to your field will give you an overview of the types of topics and subjects of interest that others have already covered. Your task then becomes coming up with material that these other sites have not explored. 

How to Choose a Topic 

Ideally, after familiarizing yourself with what others have done, you will be able to come up with topics that are completely different from what anyone else is doing. It can also be effective to do articles similar to what others have done—provided that you have a fresh perspective on them.

Often, there is a lot of content out there on a certain subject, and everybody saying the same old things but using marginally different variations. You can attract a lot of traffic if you can approach these old subjects from a new angle or with fresh information. What is old can be made new again, provided you have an original and interesting way of looking at it. 

Finding topics that draw traffic to your website is something you can do if you carefully monitor the web. Unfortunately, many people are too busy running their business or other enterprise to devote a lot of valuable energy to keeping their website current with relevant and unique content.

Posted on

5 Things Every New Collector Needs to Know

5 Things Every New Collector Needs to Know

Art collecting can be called an art onto its self, and I should say there is no right way to buy art! Art is a personal thing and you should always buy what you fall in love with or what excites you. Yes, there are many styles, names, trends and some art goes up faster than others. Art can be very trendy and people may be talking about this artist more than that one. But somewhere between fine wine and investments is where you can find fine art.

Art As An Investment

The basics of art as an investment is that you purchase a piece of art that you’re passionate about and in time the artist, gallery, or art house start selling that artist’s artwork for more than what you paid for it. Voila! you now have equity in your piece of art, keeping in mind there are many factors to how fast the equity grows and demand for that particular artist. A friend of mine sometimes uses her collection as currency, trading artworks for other things she needs. She has used this method to buy cars, pay bills and dinner. The real value in art is finding other people that are as passionate about that artist as you are. Because of this, if you own the right pieces of art it can be leveraged by sharing it with the world. Corporations, museums and traveling exhibitions lease these kinds of artworks all the time which provide income for the owners. But If you want a guarantee on your art buying… then I suggest you buy art for love, you’ll always get your value out of it.

Do Your Research

Spend some time learning about the artwork and the artist because trends and popularity can both be misleading. Whenever possible, buy art in person and even better meet with the artist. Ask them about the series if it is in one, ask what is the size of it and if they plan on continuing the series. At some point, you may plan to buy another artwork and it would be good to know if there will be more in that style. If you have the pleasure of talking to the artist, try to find out if they do art fulltime, where they will be showing next and what projects are coming up next. A lot of artists do studio sales, that help control their inventory, sale one-off pieces, and earn them additional income. Knowing when these artists are having their studio sales can normally save you a lot of cash, plus you get to hang-out in the studio. Research can be a collector’s best friend.

Collect with a Focus

This is a hard one for new collectors because they have not set any parameters yet. You do not need to limit yourself to just one type of work. Focus on a style or two or three styles, this will really help you build a great collection. This type of collecting helps to make it easier for identifying the kinds of works you want to purchase.

Proper Title Transfer

Any reputable art dealer or gallery should provide you with things like the provenance, condition, artist information with signature, history and edition numbers.

Documentation Is King

As a collector, you need to have all the documentation for your collection. Because anyone that needs to evaluate your collection must have a very thorough understanding of all the pieces. From your very first artwork you purchase, start a list of all the works, descriptions, invoices of sale prices, the purchase dates, and subsequent appraisal prices. It’s a good practice and will save you so many headaches in the future.

One of the simplest ways to learn more about an artwork or an artist is to ask questions, have fun and happy collecting.